The Favourite (dir. Yorgos Lanthimos)

January 3, 2019 | Posted by Lesley Jakobsen | Comedy Film, Drama Film, THUMBNAIL REVIEWS |

Olivia Colman in the film THE FAVOURITE. Photo by Atsushi Nishijima. © 2018 Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation All Rights Reserved

(2018) Lanthimos’s Anne (Queen of England, Scotland and Ireland from 8 March 1702 to 1 May 1707, and thereafter of Great Britain and Ireland to 1714) is bloated, dull and not fit for purpose.  Just like his film about two women’s rivalry for her favour. We decided to give The Favourite 2 stars, calculated as follows: +1 star because we love you, Yorgos, for The Lobster and The Killing of a Sacred Deer; +1 star for effort; +1 star for most of the performances (in particular, Olivia Colman as Queen Anne); +1/2 star for the black, white and grey costumes; -1/2 star…

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A Simple Favor (dir. Paul Feig)

December 17, 2018 | Posted by Lesley Jakobsen | Comedy Film, FILM, THUMBNAIL REVIEWS |

Cheers.

(Directed by Paul Feig) (2018) Anna Kendrick’s blinding teeth are not the star of this movie. Nor is Henry Ewan Golding (Sean) who has nothing to do but look frustrated and be sure never to smile. Nor is the fabulous Blake Lively (Emily) the star. The star is the wardrobe of Emily’s dandy suits. She does have a nice black dress too, which miraculously fits and flatters everyone, like those magic jeans in that other film. It’s no wonder that Stephanie (Kendrick) is immediately smitten by Emily in her three piece suit and fedora. She declares that they are BFFs…

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Bohemian Rhapsody

November 5, 2018 | Posted by Lesley Jakobsen | Drama Film, FILM, Modern Music, MUSIC, THUMBNAIL REVIEWS |

(dir. Bryan Singer) (2018) (Click here for our review of the book of the same name by Lesley-Ann Jones.) If you don’t get a shiver down the spine during the opening scene of Bohemian Rhapsody, as we follow Freddie Mercury (Rami Malek) onto the stage at Live Aid, you don’t deserve Freddie, or this terrific film – a goose-pimpling, foot-stomping bio-pic with heart. Yes, it follows the usual trajectory of ambitious boys putting their all into their music, despite evil managers and uncaring music company execs.  Yes, we know the story, and the film may not be entirely historically accurate, but…

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Dhalgren by Samuel R Delany

A man who has forgotten his name crosses a bridge at night and enters Bellona, a city where something undefined has happened, houses burn down spontaneously and at times there are two moons, one named after George Harrison – not the adorable moptop, but a large black man with a penchant for rape, who features in pornographic posters all over town. The man who has forgotten his name is known variously as the kid, The Kid, Kid and Kidd. With little effort he acquires a reputation as a poet, gang leader and saviour.  We are never sure if Bellona is a mental hospital, the…

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5 Reasons to Learn Ancient Greek – New Beginners’ Class!

June 18, 2018 | Posted by Lesley Jakobsen | HISTORY |

As TVC devotees know, I am in my fifth year of Ancient (or, more properly, Classical) Greek at the WEA with Dr Alessandro Boria.  Now, for the first time we will have a beginners’ class as well as the more advanced class.  Here are 5 good reasons why you should sign up today to the new class:- Here are the first two reasons, which it is compulsory for us to recite – Learning a language develops and hones the brain – the older the language, the more ancient its roots in human thought and the better for the grey matter; You would…

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